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  1. I’m rather hoping there may be more than one performance at the ROH given that Opera Holland Park is not available. Also who knows what social distancing will be operating and tickets may be in very short supply. But it’s great to think that the RBS may be performing.
  2. Interested to see this as I’ve been having difficulties posting photos. I hadn’t appreciated there were limits per member so will need to look at other options.
  3. The earlier snows in the valleys only lasted a couple of days. There’s snow above 1,000 feet and some very good snow on the high fells. Here’s the National Park’s fell top assessor’s photo from yesterday - frozen Red Tarn below Helvellyn. To be honest there’s often more snow in Kent than the Lake District valleys.
  4. On this afternoon’s walk I saw a buzzard swoop down to the ground and then find a convenient branch. Back home I found I’d managed to photo the buzzard plus a vole I think. Sunshine and a very gentle breeze made for a fabulous afternoon, Skiddaw and the fells looking enticing from the local quarry and one or two garden daffodils beginning to show yellow.
  5. The 74% lost nuts made me wonder about other data and I see that up to 25% of buried nuts are recovered by squirrels that didn’t bury the nuts in the first place. Here’s a link although I couldn’t get to the original Richmond article. https://ssec.si.edu/stemvisions-blog/why-do-squirrels-bury-nuts-and-other-mysteries I’m not sure if you can combine the two findings - if a squirrel buries 100 nuts, 26 are recovered on average but are they recovered by the owner or a different squirrel? However our squirrel may also be recovering nuts it didn’t bury.
  6. 21 January and National Squirrel Appreciation Day. Apparently 74% of buried nuts are never recovered. Sorry for the squirrels but it puts my occasional missing book or paper in perspective. Red squirrel in Burtness Wood, Buttermere before lockdown.
  7. Deborah Bull was very good. The alignment of mug handles at the end made me smile and I’m happy to hold my hand up to such fastidiousness.
  8. A dull day in Cumbria but there was plenty of local activity with two crows seeing off a buzzard. I didn’t manage a photo of all three but here’s one of the crows persuading the buzzard to move.
  9. “The fact that musicians and artists in general suddenly have to get visas for Europe is absolutely not the Brexit bonus we were talking about. We will have to fight it.” Saddened to see but I fear this is the reality.
  10. All good wishes to Simon Rattle and the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra but desperately sad for London and the the UK. The various discussions on the reasons for his decision (in addition to personal/family reasons) make for very uncomfortable reading.
  11. Rather hoping the hide is in addition to Father Christmas accepting your business case for a longer camera lens.
  12. I saw from a Japanese tweet that Akane Takada is replacing Francesca Hayward who was scheduled to dance Cinderella but Japanese COVID restrictions rather kaiboshed arrangements. Here’s the translation: “Francesca Hayward, who was scheduled to appear as a guest of the February performance Cinderella, was unable to enter the country due to the government's suspension of new entry from the UK, so on Saturday, February 6th The role of Cinderella will be changed to Akane Takada, the principal of the Royal Ballet in the United Kingdom.”
  13. You may find a second viewing of The Cellist more impressive without the surprise of a new ballet and knowing the male portrayal of the ‘cello. On first viewing I had some reservations (the family, the hectic bustle in places, parts of the score) but on second viewing these melted away and I’ve gleaned more and more from subsequent performances. I now look back on this double bill as one of the Royal Ballet’s triumphs. I’m sure there are other posters who also referred to the greater impact of further viewings. If you get the DVD for Dances at a Gathering, perhaps The Cellist will become a tre
  14. Not sure if there’s a need for a new thread but I very much enjoyed the New Year’s Day concert and managed to see it live. Very poignant with no audience in the Musikverein, still beautifully decorated with flowers as usual, and the Vienna Philharmonic as fabulous as ever. They too looked so very much the part and it would be far too churlish to mention one wayward tie. As always the Vienna State Ballet provided sparkling contributions. Riccardo Muti was conducting: I hadn’t appreciated that he’s 80 later this year, although I now realise it’s 40 years since his searing Macbetto at the Royal O
  15. Two positives from me for 2020. After some years I at last got round to getting a new camera. My wife and I had virtually decided on what would be good for us after a few visits to our very helpful and ever patient local camera shop. My wife was always the more IT/technically adept but I ended up getting the camera in the summer and have really enjoyed having it with me when on the fells. It’s certainly given an extra dimension, being able to zoom on distant views or wildlife. Secondly, I found myself listening to Something Understood and a repeat of ‘Seeking Eurydice’.
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